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CU Researcher to Lead National Study of Physical Activity

AURORA, Colo. – The University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus will be one of seven clinical centers nationwide to participate in an initiative of the National Institutes of Health to improve understanding of molecular changes during physical activity. 

In addition, Wendy M. Kohrt, PhD, professor of medicine at the CU School of Medicine and the Nancy Anschutz Endowed Chair in Women’s Health Research, has been named to be the inaugural chair of the national steering committee that will guide the effort. Dr. Kohrt, who will be the principal investigator on the grant establishing the clinical center at CU, is a leading researcher in exercise science with a focus on geriatrics. She serves a director of research in the division of geriatric medicine and the Center on Aging at the School of Medicine.   

The National Institutes of Health Common Fund announced today the first awards for its Molecular Transducers of Physical Activity in Humans Program, which will allow researchers to develop a comprehensive map of the molecular changes that occur in response to physical activity. 
In total, 19 grants will support researchers across the country to collect samples from people of different races, ethnic groups, sex, ages, and fitness levels. The samples will be analyzed to uncover how physical activity changes the chemical molecules within our bodies, which could lead to people engaging in more targeted and optimized types of activity.